Credit River -- big windy ending
Sunday, February 25, 2001
length: 11.0km, 1 day
participants: Chris Mack, Keith Nunn, Todd
An excellent day for paddling. Sunshine and a temperature that reached 10c. It looked like a good day for photos too, but my camera battery was dead.
Chris, Todd and I (Keith) put in at about 11:30am and headed downstream. The level was good -- bank full, but not flooding. We picked the narrow, fast channels and eddy hopped our way down to the old mill dam. We found our first and only ice dam at this point. We pulled out to walk around it. Chris and Todd pulled their boats up on the sandbar to put in on the other side, I wedged mine between the bank and the ice.
As we took a break for water, snacks, smoke (Chris), and a look downstream at the river wide wave below, the ice dam shifted and started to head downstream with my boat! I had to scramble, but all was well.
The wave we had been looking at was a great surf wave. At higher water it might become a keeper, but was quite safe and fun today.
The fun continued as we headed downstream. Some good standing waves (and the occasional lapful of water as I crashed through the middle).
About three-quarters of the way down the wind came up and paddling started to be more work. It didn't deter us too much but hurried the trip downstream.
We worked the most interesting surf wave on the river for about half an hour. Chris and I each managed to catch the good wave (me once, Chris twice), but were mostly sped across on fast ferries. Fun anyway. The wind kept clobbering angles.
We moved pretty quickly to the take out at Erindale park. The wind at this point was unbelievable. The water wasn't high enough to want to climb out on the left so a portage across the bridge tested balance and strength, fighting the gusts. I was nearly taken right over when I got to the parking lot.
Dropped the boat right there -- controlled, but barely. At this point a guy came up and practically begged to help carry the boat, so he could say he helped us. I'm not sure why it was so important, but I guess he thought we were crazy and wanted to be part of the story he was planning to tell. Suburbanites. Go figure.